City, HazMat & Garbage Company Refuse to Pick Up Abandoned Garbage Can in MTZ

July 23, 2013 8:00 am · 68 comments

garbage1 garbage2 garbage3

A concerned Martinez citizen wrote to this week with an issue about an abandoned garbage can that won’t get picked up!

Here’s her story….

During my husband’s daily dog walk, he came across an abandoned garbage can full of what looks to be household hazardous waste. It’s located near the intersection of Elderwood Dr. & Beechwood Dr. in Martinez.

It was reported to the City of Martinez and to the Contra Costa County HazMat. Five days later we noticed the can still in place but it had been issued a citation for not having its wheels against the curb, container lid not being closed, and for being too close to cars/mailboxes, etc.!

This is a very naughty garbage can! If the can does not abide by the rules and the citation is ignored will it be subject to arrest and/or fined? Will that involve a court appearance? And if so how how will the garbage get to the courthouse without any wheels?

All sarcasm aside, this garbage can has been at the location site for well over a month, Contra Costa HazMat has been notifed, the City of Martinez has also been notified and here the mysterious garbage still sits oozing an unknown black known substance into the gutter.

It’s obviously abandoned, and it’s obvious those violations won’t be cleared up anytime soon, so can somebody please get rid of it?

KEVIN July 23, 2013 at 8:02 AM


Em Dubya July 23, 2013 at 8:09 AM

I’d put a pair of cardboard antlers on it and call animal control.

sam July 23, 2013 at 8:10 AM

I live around the corner from this. I do my daily walk with my kids, we walk on the other side avoid this trash can. Now down the street from this can is another mess. Half on the street and sidewalk is a old chair and broken bookcase. Which clearly has been dumped by somebody! I really do not understand why people are dumping there crap in our neighborhood. The neighbor is not a crappy one.

MK July 23, 2013 at 8:10 AM

Not surprised. Allied Waste in Martinez has not taken my full can of Recycling for the last 4 weeks. I know it is not overstuffed as each week there are loose soda cans right on top. Called twice and was told it’s my fault. A simple 40 degree tilt of the can and everything rolls out, so I don’t get think it is my fault.

I have also complained about extended parked cars in our neighborhood and was told that because we are on the border with Pleasant Hill and the people parking their cars are from PH and not Martinez, there is nothing they can do. I find that hard to believe and think it more like there is nothing they want to do.

The Mamba July 23, 2013 at 8:22 AM

This is the same garbage can I saw peeping in windows and walking pit bulls off leash! Throw it in jail! In all seriousness, this is a prime example of the pervasive “not my job” attitude in government.

Also, someone needs to do some serious weeding. That area outside the fence may not always be visible to the homeowner, but it is always visible to people walking or driving by and reflects on you and the respect you have for your neighbors.

Connie Dobbs July 23, 2013 at 8:24 AM

It’s like none of you have ever heard of an apartment complex dumpster. Chuck it in there.

JUST PATHETIC July 23, 2013 at 8:32 AM


Nick July 23, 2013 at 8:33 AM

This isn’t a Allied Watse can. Let the city pick it up!

B July 23, 2013 at 8:37 AM

I think the people of Martinez should rethink about voting there city council back in. Is should never take that long and who every gave that notice to the can needs to be fired that’s our tax dollar at work

Mid July 23, 2013 at 8:38 AM

Em! You are awesome. To everyone suggesting a citizen dispose of it personally, that would. Put them at risk of paying fines associated with disposing of hazardous waste. The city or garbage company needs to step up and just come deal with it.

Don July 23, 2013 at 8:41 AM

@Kevin…If someone does that and gets caught they will be charged with littering or even worse the EPA will fine them.
@ Connie…It’s hazardous waste.

Virginia Hills Mom July 23, 2013 at 8:50 AM

MK, I also live on the mtz/ph border. I too have called about cars parked for days and people dumping furniture. I call PHPD because I live a few feet into the PH area. The PHPD also tell me they can do nothing about cars parking on public open space or people dumping stuff on open space because it is “on the edge of the road”. If you leave a car on the side of the road in Concord, you have to move it every 72 hours, but here the police don’t care…

Lori July 23, 2013 at 8:51 AM

Connie Dobbs lol thanks for the laugh !! I live in Martinez have had to call Allied Waste a couple of times regarding a couple of issues. The only time I got results is when I called and insisted on talking to a supervisor.

sam July 23, 2013 at 8:51 AM

Funny how they marked it to close to cars. Sorry but cars are never parked in that area!!

Antler July 23, 2013 at 8:55 AM

Just thinking how thankful I am for the job done by the Garaventa family and corporation, Concord Disposal.

Kathy July 23, 2013 at 8:56 AM

Call Allied Waste and ask for the mgr. (can’t think of his name off hand). We live in Martinez, and have a problem with garbage pick up as well. My husband calls Allied and IRRITATES THE LIVING HELL out of the reps, and next thing you knows, mgr. at Allied is on the phone with my husb. by cell. I think his name is Ed, but don’t quote me. If you cause a big enough stir, Allied will respond. You have to have a valid complaint (and this is) and you have to be uncivilized. They will respond if for no other reason, to keep you from calling back! They, like anybody else, can’t handle being harassed.

Anon777 July 23, 2013 at 8:56 AM

Stupid is as stupid does.

We occasionally get “your garbage cans are too close to cars” in Concord, but I put my cans out in the afternoon when there are NO cars on the street. I can’t help where people come and park later. Can you give us some No Parking Cones to put up around our garbage cans?? Remember the days when the garbage man used to walk up to the person’s gate, open it, and emptied the cans into a big rolling can the garbage man moved around with?? It’s really not that hard to get out of your truck and DO YOUR JOB!!

Nikki July 23, 2013 at 8:59 AM

Why should it matter if its a crappy neighborhood or not? People just need to stop dumping ish period, and somebody pick up this dang can. I know my husband would get rid of it rather then let it sit on our crappy neighborhood street and ooze stuff into the gutter. Just saying… Are you just going to sit there and complain or do something about it?

Justin July 23, 2013 at 9:06 AM

Connie Dobbs, don’t be stupid. Don’t touch the can, and don’t pass the buck onto an apt. or condo complex. I live in Martinez as well and have had problems with garbage pick up. Call Allied, get management on the phone, and get it resolved. It’s all about the approach.

How odd July 23, 2013 at 9:14 AM

Who left the notice? Allied Waste? That is not even one of their collection cans do it would not be their responsibility to pick it up or place a naughty notice of any type. This is a regular can you can purchase anywhere and equates to someone leaving a cardboard box of junk on the street. And since it is on the public right if way, the city is responsible for cleaning it up! That is what Martinez taxpayers pay for! Call the city and ask why it hasn’t been taken care if yet. Better yet, let them know it is now all over the Claycord blog and ill bet they run to clean it up. Lol!!

Julio July 23, 2013 at 9:20 AM

Allied Waste has an agreement with Antioch to come pick-up furniture, trash any stuff in an empty lot or on the side of the road for days. They are very good at this and all it takes is a phone call. If someone doesn’t have trash service all we have to do is call, they verify and in a day or two they are at the peoples house.

ggg July 23, 2013 at 9:22 AM

You have to shame the City staff into action. Email the Mayor and City Council with your complaint. Carbon Copy it to the Gazette.

wastes. July 23, 2013 at 9:30 AM

It did take a while for animal control to pick up that deer–let’s hope the advertisement on claycord will get quicker results.

Retired Cop July 23, 2013 at 9:33 AM

“I have also complained about extended parked cars in our neighborhood and was told that because we are on the border with Pleasant Hill and the people parking their cars are from PH and not Martinez, there is nothing they can do”

To a real PD– it does not matter where a car is registered–it gets a cite or towed….72 hours is the state law for abandoned — it get towed after being tagged & really simple & civilians do it in all not know what the deal is here

anon July 23, 2013 at 9:34 AM

If this was near my home & kids– I would pack it all up & drop it at Hazmat–case solved

nutz July 23, 2013 at 9:51 AM

Union + mob + rubber stamp by city council. What do youexpect?

Frustrated with politics July 23, 2013 at 10:01 AM

If Gov. officials were really after public safety and environmental health this can would be gone but unfortunately those issues are only important when revenue can be gained by imposing fines to the citizens. Once again another epic fail to insure public safety.It would be nice if people would just do their job without the excuses!! This includes the thoughtless dirt bag that left it there and every public official that leaves it there!!!

LocalGirl July 23, 2013 at 10:03 AM

Does anyone in the neighborhood have a truck … if so maybe someone can take it over to the household waste place on Imhoff? They will take it. They don’t do pick ups, but that’s where it should go.

letsthinkaboutthis July 23, 2013 at 10:04 AM

I’m thinking they don’t want to pick it up because then it would signal to all those people that dump crap in neighborhoods to not worry someone else will clean it up. I’m not saying that they people who put it there in the first place are going to say — wow, they didn’t clean up after me I should be a responsible citizen and clean it up myself — I’m just noticing the stance of these companies are one of – “If we clean up this clowns mess, we’ll be forever cleaning up other peoples ish too.” If you’re wondering where they are going to get the money for the extra effort to clean this crap up, you guessed it, it’s us.

Rella July 23, 2013 at 10:11 AM

Sooooo if it’s bothering you that much why don’t you remove it yourself? Also, I live in a crappier neighborhood than you (probably) and if something like this was messing up my neighborhood I, or one of the other folks in our neighborhood would actually do something about it ourselves. We are not above fixing a problem…..walking by it for weeks…..shame on you!

MartinezResident July 23, 2013 at 10:14 AM

I’ve had to deal with the city management, they are some of the most defensive people I have ever dealt with. To get anything done you’ll have to CC news agencies such as ABC7, CBS, NBC, CCTimes, Martinez News Gazette, etc. I have no idea how some of them keep getting elected I know I don’t vote for them.

MartinezResident July 23, 2013 at 10:15 AM

OH, if you write “FREE METH” on the can maybe it will disappear.

What a world! July 23, 2013 at 10:16 AM

Remember when the garbage collector used to actually come into your yard, pick the metal can up over his shoulder, bring it out to the street to the truck, throw the trash in the truck and then return the can back to your yard? Wow, we paid a lot less back then and got way more service. Now we pay a lot more for a lot less service. It’s not even good enough that we have to roll out trash to the public curb but we have to have the cans mathematically aligned with the moon and stars or they will not only not collect the trash, they will take more time to write you a condescending note and place it on your can letting you know why they just stood next to the can of trash but didn’t do anything with it. What a world!

MartinezResident July 23, 2013 at 10:18 AM
Connie Dobbs July 23, 2013 at 10:27 AM

You’re not the boss of me, Justin.

rw July 23, 2013 at 10:39 AM

If it stays there long enough, maybe the Martinez Police can start issuing parking tickets to it.

Cowellian July 23, 2013 at 10:53 AM

Yes sir, Officer Obie, I cannot tell a lie. I put that envelope under that garbage

This is Sad. July 23, 2013 at 11:11 AM

First, what good did it do for someone to drive out and tag an abandoned can? How do you “cite” an object?

Second, dispose of it yourself? NO WAY. Once you pick it up and put it in you car or truck, it’s YOURS and you can be cited by CHP for hauling over so many gallons of stuff.

They have the Haz-Mat place on Imhoff Drive. Certainly a count worker can collect this and take it there. That is why it’s there. To keep people from dumping toxins into the water supply and poisoning our world.

Your Local Official July 23, 2013 at 11:13 AM

We are planning to establish a Select Committee to study the question of abandoned waste. To pay for the study, we will add a $5 monthly usage fee to your trash bill. We expect to have a report with recommendations not less than 72 months from now.

We are on the job and looking after your needs.

Betty Boop July 23, 2013 at 11:18 AM

Wait until dark and roll it into the street then call PD they will come remove it.

Rick July 23, 2013 at 11:44 AM

Call Allied and offer to pay to have it picked up, or take it to the dump yourself. Don’t be cheap, and don’t dump it in a complex. The complex is for residents, not low lifes that don’t want to pay for garbage service. There are probably kids in this neighborhood. Use good judgment and get it resolved. Whining is not a “results oriented.”

Chris KAp July 23, 2013 at 11:45 AM

Don’t get me started but you did. I fond medical waste in the creek. No one would touch it. Take it. I found asbestos pipes in the creek. No one would touch it , take it. I helped an elderly lady clean out her garage with some very old and very poisonous stuff. I drove it to the haz. waste place for her no cost and I was in my work truck and they wanted to charge me. This was a favor, and on a weekend. They called me a liar basically and wanted to charge her. I drove back and told her. she was on a fixed income. I told her I had to have her have someone in a car take it, and had to unload it all back in her garage and not touch it.. On and on, our county, system is a complete joke. And this is just the tip of the hazardous waste/garbage iceberg in Martinez over the last 25 years. I have dealt with.

Chris KAp July 23, 2013 at 11:48 AM

PS. I would take it to haz waste but they have my truck license plate I file and charge me, because they think I do it for a living. I do not. So I cannot take it, and I aint getting stuck with toxic crap again. No wonder people dump this crap int he creek and on country roads. Pathetic what our priorities are… Spare the air. How bout a spare the earth day.

Anon2you July 23, 2013 at 12:01 PM

Put a sign on it that says, “FREE” and it will be gone in minutes. I get rid of trash all the time that way. Just got rid of an old BBQ in about 15 minutes that would have cost me $$ to dump…

nytemuvr July 23, 2013 at 12:10 PM

@Cowellian #37
Now I’ll be singing Alice’s Restaurant all day…..with all the rest of the mother rapers and father rapers….

Sheila July 23, 2013 at 12:43 PM

Be a good neighbor (and citizen) and take this garbage can to the Haz-Mat place on Imhoff Dr. Wear gloves. If the proper people have been notified (and it looks like they have), and no one does anything about it, sometimes you have to do it yourself. Only you (as well as your neighbors) live in this neighborhood. Quit complaining, and be proactive!

ConcordMike July 23, 2013 at 1:58 PM

Why is this even on
Someone just pick it up and throw it out!

LocalGirl July 23, 2013 at 2:06 PM

Pretty much what I said, Sheila … does it suck that someone left it there? YES!!!!! But if you want it gone, someone needs to load it up and take it here: … period.

anonanonagain July 23, 2013 at 2:22 PM

Horrible. Black Ooze leaking into the drains and into the waterways and eventually the bay. Wow. Some people don’t give a rat’s about the environment let alone our own city……….

Lalalala July 23, 2013 at 2:25 PM

If you are really upset about how this situation is handled, contact your city council person.

Just me July 23, 2013 at 3:37 PM

I agree that the Allied, the City & Haz-mat should have done a better job, but it bugs me nobody seems to be pissed at the idiots that abandoned the waste. The dumpers are the ones that created the problem, not Allied, the City or Haz-mat.

JD July 23, 2013 at 4:05 PM

Flick a match and call the fire department.

Explain July 23, 2013 at 4:10 PM

Well it is a suspicious object containing unknown liquids that may be a terrorist threat… call the bomb squad out.

Reality Slap July 23, 2013 at 6:52 PM

While you need to speak to a Manager at the garbage company when there is a problem, or a repeat problem, you need to call Martinez City Hall and place a complaint against the Garbage company as well. The company contracts with the City for the service and the more complaints lodged gives the City leverage for services not rendered. The squeaky wheel gets the oil, at least if it’s against the curb…….

JRconcord July 23, 2013 at 7:30 PM

put a hoodie on it ands call the cops……..

Jerk July 23, 2013 at 8:08 PM

Of course whoever left this here is a DOUCHEBAG! Moving on – you`re going about this all wrong = what about the children that have been playing over there – the children!!!

Where is Captain CAN ? July 23, 2013 at 8:17 PM

Been to a garbage transfer station to drop off lately?

Look at those prices, is it any wonder washers, dryers, refrigerators, mattresses, etc are being dumped out in the community.
Call board of supervisors, city council members and voice your outrage and disgust for their inaction.

By the way whatever happened in Concord to “Captain CAN” the recycle enforcer, the garbage company was willing to pay for to prevent “their” recycling totes from being raided?

J. July 23, 2013 at 8:57 PM

Put the containers of hazmat in your trunk and drive them over to the hazmat drop off center on Imhoff. They’ll unload for you.

Central Contra Costa Household Hazardous Waste Collection Facility
4797 Imhoff Place, Martinez
(800) 646-1431
Hours: Tu-Sa, 9am-4pm

Looks like some oil and some anti-freeze.

carlos July 23, 2013 at 9:17 PM

If it is leaking into a drain, contact Fish and Game. Sometimes they will get involved.

JAM July 23, 2013 at 9:27 PM

WEll that is Allied Waste for you, they should be dumped from picking up garbage in Martinez anyway and as for you, stop being lazy and a panzy and drive it down to hazardous waste instead of watching the black stuff fill the gutters that go to you water source and you end up drinking it.Or the bay which will sicken the fish you eat from your local market.

Thank the tree huggers July 23, 2013 at 9:29 PM

Where is Captain CAN ? July 23, 2013 at 8:17 PM

Been to a garbage transfer station to drop off lately?

Thank your liberal, green, solar, tree hugging politicians! All those prices are “fees” to save landfills, prevent this or that, and keep the unicorns pink.

Like the florescent light bulb…boy oh boy that saves energy…but they last as long as a California marriage, cost three times as much, and last a fraction as a “regular” bulb. And don’t break one in your house, the mercury inside is really, really bad.

you're funny July 23, 2013 at 10:52 PM

This problem sure has its humorous side…

mine. July 23, 2013 at 11:44 PM

Looks like only waste that belongs to someone else. Just have the hazmat team do away with it. It’s no good just sitting there.

Craig Cannon July 23, 2013 at 11:46 PM

Hey, Stanley Roberts From KRON 4 Just had that same thing on Facebook Tonight! I didn’t see “Courtesy Claycord” so I suppose someone’s calling Every Media Entity? This is Wierd. Sad. The Can O Toxics that is. I’m seeing my Friend Stanley out here too much. Not a Good Sign of The Times?

The Mamba July 24, 2013 at 7:06 AM

Report it as a suspicious package, the bomb squad will come out and blow it up and flex their muscles in front of the cameras.

Walnut Creek resident July 24, 2013 at 7:52 AM

My husband said that he never has any trouble dropping off old paint, etc. at the hazardous waste collection facility. He puts the stuff in his truck, drives it over, they check his driver’s license, and take it. No problem.

P.U. July 24, 2013 at 8:06 AM

A shout-out to Animal Control for the very timely pick up of a dead skunk in Pleasant Hill a couple of days ago. Thanks!

sam July 24, 2013 at 6:32 PM

The can has been removed!!!

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